We hosted Jatin Mittal and Mehdi Abbassi from France-based hyper-casual publisher TapNation. The duo talked about their experiences and hyper-casual game testing processes at TapNation, which has released dozens of games and received more than 500 million downloads so far.
Publishers evaluate hyper-casual games by subjecting them to many tests. These tests give very consistent results about the future of the game. Many publishers decide which games to invest in by looking at these tests.
There are many methods and metrics used when testing a hyper-casual game. Jatin Mittal talks about these tests and explains the process.
How do publishers decide to publish a hyper-casual game?
Jatin Mittal describes the publishing process of a hyper-casual in five stages. The first stage is the prototyping; at this stage, the CPI values of the game are being tested. CPI values below $0.40 are considered successful.
The second stage starts after the CPI test, and the publisher decides whether to iterate or not. Games that fail the CPI tests are shelved, and the third stage is passed for the successful ones.
In the third stage, the game that is decided to be iterated is tested for 1 or 2 months, and how close the D1 retention is to 30% is measured. If this value is below 30%, the processes are repeated, and the target is tried to be achieved.
When the desired goal in D1 retention tests is reached, the fourth stage, the final tests, begins. At this stage, the game’s and plug ads’ profitability are tested.
The game is published in the fifth and final stage, and the support and follow-up process begins. If a problem is encountered in previous cycles, the game is re-evaluated, and design or software changes are made.
It is worth noting that the 0.40 CPI and 30% D1 values used here may vary depending on the project. Some exceptional games can achieve success despite having high CPI values. Publishers evaluate each game specifically.
How is LTV calculated and how does it affect the game?
LTV (Life Time Value) is the average value a customer can generate as they continue to play the game. High LTV means more money can be earned from each user. In this respect, LTV is a critical metric.
Mehdi Abbassi gives the formula for LTV as follows:
LTV = ARPDAU x Retention
ARPDAU means average revenue per daily active user. Retention is a metric that shows how committed players are to the game. If users enter the game frequently on other days after installing it for the first time, it means high retention.
TapNation says average LTV values are between $0.30 and $2 for a hyper-casual game.
What is ROAS and how can it be improved?
ROAS is the revenue from advertising divided by the cost of advertising. High ROAS means you’re running a lucrative advertising campaign.
ROAS calculation formula:
ROAS = Advertising revenue / advertising cost
For example, if a game with $1.4 million in ad revenue has an advertising cost of $1 million, the ROAS is 140%.
Mehdi Abbassi examines what it takes to achieve better ROAS values under five headings:
- ROAS target
- The time trend
In order to improve the ROAS, a detailed and painstaking study should be done within these five headings. For example, an advertisement made in the USA and an advertisement made in Turkey will give different results. For this reason, it may be necessary to make special advertisements for both countries.
Jatin Mittal and Mehdi Abbassi discuss how you can develop critical performance metrics for hyper-casual games. You can find more information on the subject in the video above.
You can also find much informative content on the Mobidictum Business YouTube channel and watch interviews with industry experts.